Cheryl Jacobson-Thompson, 53, pled guilty to grand theft Wednesday afternoon in Lodi Superior Court. Jacobson-Thompson was arrested Jan. 26 for embezzling nearly $250,000 from Tokay Glass Company over a period of several years.
“She admits the embezzlement exceeds $200,000 and will be sentenced Aug. 1,” said District Attorney Stephen Taylor. “She will be held without bail at county jail in French Camp until then.”
The plea deal comes with a 3-year prison sentence, Taylor said.
Jacobson-Thompson’s attorney, John Soldati, declined to comment on Wednesday’s plea.
“It’s still an open plea at this time,” he said. “I have no comment at this time.”
Jacobson-Thompson’s husband, DeNeille Thompson, 61, had the charges against him dropped, Taylor said. Thompson was charged with conspiracy, theft, forgery and falsifying books at Tokay Glass. Thompson had been included in the charges because photographs taken at a Wells Fargo bank appeared to show him cashing forged checks.
However, charges against Thompson were dropped because his wife said she told him they were her paychecks that he was cashing, Taylor said. The checks Thompson cashed came on the 1st and 15th of the month, days that are commonly paydays, Taylor said.
“Cheryl insisted he knew nothing,” Taylor said. “The law requires there to be an intent to steal.”
While the charges were dropped, they can be re-filed against Thompson if new evidence is uncovered, Taylor said. He also remains in custody on an unrelated charge for a misdemeanor in Los Angeles, Taylor said.
As part of her plea, Jacobson-Thompson will testify under oath about how she spent the money over the years. Her testimony will be key in the civil suit between Tokay Glass Company and Georgia Martin Accounting, the company Jacobson-Thompson worked for.
While she did the books for Tokay Glass Company, Jacobson-Thompson was not an employee of the company. She was employed by Georgia Martin Accounting and worked on a contract basis for Tokay Glass. The glass company is suing the bookkeeping agency, Taylor said.
While the district attorney’s office works to recoup embezzled money in cases like these, Taylor said Tokay Glass may never see the hundreds of thousands of dollars Jacobson-Thompson took again.
“That money is spent and gone,” he said.
Contact reporter Jordan Guinn at firstname.lastname@example.org.